Series 4, Episode 13: Overcoming adversity - A personal story about diversity, acceptance and driving a culture of workplace inclusion
Manage episode 331769646 series 2288596
In this episode, Sush Bastola, Sales Director at the EW Group and Challenge Consultancy, meets Graci Harkema to discuss overcoming adversity and creating a culture of belonging in the workplace. Graci is a US-based diversity specialist.
Graci shares her moving and inspirational personal story from being born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo during civil unrest with little chance of survival, to being adopted, moving to the USA, realising her sexual orientation and ultimately accepting herself for who she is.
Graci says: “I was living for others’ expectations instead of accepting my own identities. For so long I saw my identities as my shame instead of my strength.”
Sush and Graci also discuss how employers can develop authentic leadership and truly be inclusive to support an internal culture which makes employees want to stay. Graci shares insights into how her past colleagues and employer supported her through her journey and helped her feel a sense of belonging in the workplace where she could be her authentic self.
With increasing pressure from customers, staff, networks and communities to develop more ethical and inclusive practices, they explore how fostering an inclusive culture not only gives organisations a competitive edge in the marketplace, but also positively impacts the bottom line as a result of stronger collaboration and teamwork which directly contribute to the productivity and service the organisation provides.
Follow Graci Harkema on LinkedIn and Twitter or visit her website. Graci’s memoir ‘Rising: From a Mud Hut to the Boardroom - and Back Again is now available for pre-order and will be released in Spring 2023.
Follow EW Group on Twitter and LinkedIn for the latest news and thinking in diversity and inclusion or get in touch to explore how we can work with you to build safe and inclusive environments at work.